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Amalia Margaryan

Diana Ghazaryan

Artists For Artsakh: Photographers and Painters Selling Their Work Online

A group of painters and photographers living and working in Armenia and abroad have placed their works for sale online to assist Armenian forces on the frontline and families relocated from Artsakh.

Well-known names and beginners have joined the charity drive.

Seven year-old Victoria Gharagyozyan has attended painting classes for three years. She's selling her paintings to help soldiers and Artsakh.

She’s selected nine of her paintings. Proceeds generated from the online sale will be go to the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund. The highest bidder wins.

Victoria has already sold five paintings for a total of 70,000 drams. Her parents came up with the idea and the girl was hooked.

"We didn’t want to sell her very favorite paintings. She really holds on to them. Of course, we don’t force her. She says she’ll continue painting and sell them all,” says Victoria’s mother Hasmik Matinyan.

Victoria’s parents shied away from talking about the war when the fighting in Artsakh first erupted. When Hasmik's brother volunteered to go to the front, the parents told the child that there was a war in Artsakh and that any money they donated was possible.

Those from Armenia and overseas who’ve purchased the paintings have already transferred the money. The works have still to be delivered.

Nothing will happen if we do not have a homeland

"When a state of war was declared, I was in shock. I sent some money to the Foundation and to the needy, but when I realized that my funds were running out, I put my paintings up for sale, ”says Mariam Mughdusyan, an artist living in Toronto, Canada.

She also sells paintings she never intended to sell, realizing that material values no longer matter.  Mariam sells her works at a 50-70% discount.

Mariam has put up more than ten painting for sale in Canada and Armenia and has already sold five. The buyers are Armenians and non-Armenians.  

"We are not actually doing anything. Only those who at the front are doing something. I don’t know an artist who hasn’t joined this initiative," says Mariam.

The artist has also sold hand-painted T-shirts. Proceeds from the sale of the paintings and T-shirts were sent to the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund to send supplies to the soldiers.

Mariam Mughdusyan painting

"You feel so helpless when you physically can’t be on the front line. The only way to help is financially. Nothing will happen if we do not have our homeland. We have a task to support our family, the people who are facing disaster, to help our country," the artist says.

Women photographers for Artsakh

The team of "4 Plus" women photographers joined the movement with the slogan "Photos for Artsakh and the army".

They sell their photos taken in Artsakh, and the T-shirt, bags and postcards adorned with them. Proceeds from the sale will be donated to the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund.

The photos are sold both in print and digital form.

The group’s “Postcards from Artsakh” book displays the photos taken by four photographers: Nazik Armenakyan, Anahit Hayrapetyan, Nelly Shishmanyan and Piruza Khalapyan, taken in Artsakh over the years.

"I think the initiative to sell the works of artists is a nice gesture, because the most precious thing for an artist are the works. You give what you create for the sake of Artsakh, because not all artists are rich, they do not have much money to donate, but at least we will give what we have," photographer Anahit Hayrapetyan told Hetq.

Each of the 54 cards sold depicts episodes of the daily life of the people of Artsakh who suffered from the local conflict, the aftermath of the war, the pain of loss and the joy of a wedding, the daily life of soldiers and first graders, memories of the past and present.

Anahit lives in Frankfurt, Germany, and is trying to organize an exhibition-sale there to sell her works.

Top photo: Stepanakert shelter

Comments (1)

Bianca Arbucci
I love the Armenian people and their culture, history. My neighbors are Armenian and they are wonderful. I love them. I started painting Armenian themed artwork several years ago. I would like to sell my Armenian artwork with 20%((30% depending on sales) of the proceeds from each sale go towards the Armenian cause. I just don't know how to go about doing this. I want to help my friends because they are so kind to me and now they need help.. I don't have a website and I don't have a lot of money (I'm retired). Can you give me some advice? What you are doing is great! Thank you so very much.

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